Camera Lens Detailed Science: How to Choose Between Fixed Focus, Zoom, and Size

Camera Lens Detailed Science

Many novice photographers choose to buy a camera with a kit because most of them have no concept of lenses and therefore cannot directly understand their needs. Different choices of lenses, for photography bring vastly different feelings and bring a completely different picture sense. Today, we will introduce you to the knowledge about the lens to help newbies pick the right lens for them.

(Credit: ZOL, All Images)

Fixed focal length lens and zoom lens: If you simply classify lenses, you can divide them into two broad categories: fixed focal length lenses and zoom lenses.

A fixed focal length lens is a lens with a fixed focal length, such as the Nikon Z 85mm F1.8 lens, which has a fixed 85mm focal length.

If you use a fixed focal length lens and also want to change the distance to the subject, you will have to do your walk around. Fixed focal length lenses commonly feature large apertures, such as F2.0, F1.8, F1.4, F1.2, etc. Relatively speaking, a fixed focal length lens can provide better image quality than a zoom lens, but not every fixed focal length lens has this feature.

A zoom lens is a lens whose focal length can be changed, such as the Nikon Z 24-70mm F2.8 lens, whose focal length can be changed at will between 24 and 70mm. Users can stand in place and directly shoot the different images supported by the lens focal length.

The distinction between wide-angle, standard, and telephoto lenses

If you are differentiating lenses by focal length, you can divide them into several categories such as fisheye lenses, wide-angle lenses, standard lenses, telephoto lenses, and ultra-telephoto lenses. How to distinguish these categories, we look down.

What is the “Big Three Lens”

We’ve always heard of the “Big Three” lenses, which is the name of the set of lenses you should have when entering advanced photography.

The “Big Three” lens is a collective term for three zoom lenses with a constant F2.8 aperture, the focal ratio of which is 16-35mm, 24-70mm, 70-200mm (wide-angle lens focal lengths will be different, such as 14-24mm, 15-35mm, etc.).

The “Big Three Lens” is generally a very good zoom lens, so the image quality performance is very good, even better than the performance of some fixed focal length lenses.

What is a “small three-dimensional” lens

The “little triangle” lens is the counterpart of the “big three lenses”, which is composed of three zoom lenses with a constant aperture of F4, their focal lengths remain 16-35mm, 24-70mm, 70-200mm (wide-angle lenses may have a focal length of 14-30mm, etc.).

Usually, after advanced photography, not enough money will choose to buy the “small three lenses”, more powerful users will choose to buy the “big three lenses”.

The aperture of the lens

The aperture of the lens is the component that controls the amount of light fed, consisting of an aperture blade, but also controls the bokeh effect of the picture.

The larger the aperture, the smaller the value, such as F1.2, F2.0, the greater the amount of light fed into the image, the more obvious the bokeh effect; the smaller the aperture, the larger the value, such as F8, F11, the smaller the amount of light fed into the image, the less obvious the bokeh effect. The aperture value of each lens is marked on the lens.

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The aperture of the lens will be divided into a constant aperture and a variable aperture in addition to the size of the points. The aperture mentioned here is the maximum aperture value that the lens can reach, not the only aperture available for the lens.

Generally, fixed-focus lenses are constant apertures, such as 50mm F1.2, 85mm F1.2, etc. The “big three lenses” and “small three lenses” lenses introduced above and a few zoom lenses also have constant aperture characteristics, such as 70- 200mm F2.8, 24-105mm F4, etc.

But many entry-level lenses (including most kit lenses) are variable aperture, which means their maximum aperture changes with the focal length, such as the Nikon Z 24-200mm F4-6.3, where the aperture is variable, from F4 (corresponding to the wide end) to F6.3 (corresponding to the telephoto end).

As I said above, the aperture controls not only the amount of light fed into the lens, but also the bokeh level, and one of the characteristics of the bokeh effect is the spot (a large aperture produces a spot in a point light picture), and the more aperture blades the lens has, the more the aperture will be rounded, which means it is also liked by users.

Purchase a lens that is compatible with the mount when purchasing

Many novice users, due to limited funds, may not necessarily buy the same lens as the camera brand, that is, the original manufacturer’s lens, which has the best quality and compatibility, but also more expensive.

Many users will choose Tamron, Sigma, and other Japanese brands or a domestic brand such as Zhongyi Optics and Lao Frog, etc. Therefore, when you buy the right lens, you need to make the right choice and buy a lens with the right mount.

For example, the Canon DSLR camera’s mount is EF, the full-frame DSLR camera’s mount is RF; the Nikon DSLR camera’s mount is F, the full-frame DSLR camera’s mount is Z, Sony full-frame DSLR camera’s mount is FE, etc. Each camera brand has its mount system, so you must go to the official website to check your camera’s mount before you buy it.

For beginners, there is indeed no problem to choose the first lens, because although the lens does not have the characteristics of a large aperture, the focal length coverage is more comprehensive, so users can find the focal length and type of photography they are good at, and then buy the lens according to their own needs, to avoid wasting money. Finally, have fun with your photography.

Source: ZOL (Zhongguancun)
Original Writer: Chen Chen

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